This seminal early work of Foucault is indispensable to understanding his development as a thinker. Written in 1954 and revised in 1962, Mental Illness and Psychology delineates the shift that occurred in Foucault's thought during this period. The first iteration reflects the philosopher's early interest in and respect for Freud and the psychoanalytic tradition. The second part, rewritten in 1962, marks a dramatic change in Foucault's thinking. Examining the history of madness as a social and cultural construct, he moves outside of the psychoanalytic tradition into the radical critique of Freud that was to dominate his later work. Mental Illness and Psychology is an important document tracing the intellectual evolution of this influential thinker. A foreword by Foucault scholar Hubert Dreyfus situates the book within the framework of Foucault's entire body of work.
One of the most important theorists of the twentieth century, Michel Foucault's (1926-1984) many influential books include Discipline and Punish, The Archeology of Knowledge, The History of Sexuality, and The Discourse on Language.